RARE & FINE Antique Chinese Carved Mother-of-Pearl Snuff Box Monkeys Play Cards
C e l es ti a l N o n e s u ch. An exquisitely carved antique Mother-of-Pearl box, possibly used as a Snuff Box. This piece is so magnificently carved, the beauty of this object cannot be understated. Lusciously stepped on the bottom, on the top is an incredible carving of a grouping of three monkeys, wearing hats and playing cards beneath an ornate tree, with an architectural feature at the right. The high degree of detail of this is awe-striking - from the blades of grass, to the fur of the monkeys coats, to the bark and leaves of the trees, to the fine ornate border which compliments the metal-work, everything adds up to a superb piece of art. This piece may be depicting the Japanese proverbial and pictorial maxim of the'Three Wise Monkey's', which interestingly may have its roots in a similar Chinese phrase from the Analects of Confucious: "Look not at what is contrary to propriety; listen not to what is contrary to propriety; speak not what is contrary to propriety; make no movement which is contrary to propriety". It almost appears as if the monkey over the shoulder of the one card player may be signalling to the opponent what card is being held - with a hand partially obscured it looks as though the signal is out of the eyesight of the monkey holding what appears to be a five of diamonds. What an incredible piece of artistic ability.
The Chinese were considered the best carvers of the world at this point in history, and clearly rightfully so. Probably Chinese dating to the 19th Century. Some damage to the bottom carved shell - see attached images - this damage extends as a surface crack, which may be a natural inclusion - also emphasized in the images. Exhibits signs of age such as surface wear and weathering.
As they are part of the description, please enlarge all photographs to better ascertain details and condition. The packing peanuts we use are recyclable: #6.
Thank you for shopping with us. Follow us for quality items and other assorted. The item "RARE & FINE Antique Chinese Carved Mother-of-Pearl Snuff Box Monkeys Play Cards" is in sale since Saturday, May 30, 2020.
This item is in the category "Antiques\Asian Antiques\China\Boxes". The seller is "celestial_nonesuch" and is located in Boyertown, Pennsylvania. This item can be shipped worldwide.
- Primary Material: Mother-of-Pearl
- Age: 1800-1900
- Type: Boxes
- Original/Reproduction: Antique Original
- Region of Origin: China
- Handmade: Yes